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Aug 5, 2015

17 Amazing Music Videos That The VMAs Snubbed

Just because they didn't get a VMA nomination doesn't mean they don't deserve one.

1. Rihanna – "Bitch Better Have My Money"

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Directed by: Robyn Rihanna Fenty & MegaForce

Murder! Intrigue! Revenge! Exposed breasts! Seriously, VMAs, what else could "Bitch Better Have My Money" have given you to get a nomination?! That's just unfair!

2. Donnie Trumpet & the Social Experiment - "Sunday Candy"

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Directed by: Austin Vesely, Ian Eastwood and Chance The Rapper

Though his name isn't technically on the song (instead credited as part of The Social Experiment), Chance the Rapper co-directed this video in which he also stars. The video's wholesome 1950s-meets-high school musical aesthetic succeeds in that it's impossible not to watch without a big dumb smile on your face.

3. The Staves – "Black and White"

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Directed by: Jack Whitely

A female news anchor discovers her coanchor husband is cheating on her right before a live broadcast, and she struggles to keep her fake smile for the cameras while confronting him during commercial breaks. Of course, she can't keep her fake smile for long. And THAT, ladies and gentlemen, is where things go from bad to very, very bad.

4. Run The Jewels ft. Zack de la Rocha - "Close Your Eyes (And Count To F**k)"

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Directed by: A.G. Rojas

Like Kendrick Lamar did in the Video of the Year nominated "Alright," Run the Jewels focused on police violence in this intense video. "For me, it was important to write a story that didn’t paint a simplistic portrait of the characters of the Cop and Kid," says director A.G. Rojas in the YouTube video's description. "They're not stereotypes. They're people - complex, real people and, as such, the power had to shift between them at certain points throughout the story."

5. St. Vincent - "Birth In Reverse"

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Directed by: Willo Perron

Only St. Vincent's Annie Clark could look completely natural and in her element while playing guitar in space. Watching her headbang in slow motion never gets old. While this video didn't get any VMA noms, it should at least put Clark on the shortlist to get a constellation named after her.

6. Perfume Genius – "Queen"

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Directed by: Cody Critcheloe

"Queen" is a helpful reminder that sometimes the most punk-rock, rebellious thing you can do is dress in drag and break stuff. Writhing around on a board room table in high heels looks preferable to another boring Powerpoint presentation.

7. Vince Staples – "Señorita"

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Directed by: Ian Pons Jewell

Depicting a hyperbolic, post-apocalyptic portrait of his native Long Beach, Vince Staples' "Senorita" video is, in a word, bleak. But what makes this video great is its winking ending, which cleverly reminds viewers to keep their perspective in check. Vince is watching you too.

8. Ariel Pink – "Picture Me Gone"

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Directed by: Grant Singer

The heavy emotional plot propelling the music video for "Picture Me Gone" almost makes up for all of the creepy rubber masks. Almost... *shivers*

9. Spoon – "Do You"

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Directed by: Hiro Murai

Murai, the director behind this year's jaw-dropping VMA-nominated video for Flying Lotus' "Never Catch Me," wasn't satisfied with just one masterpiece in 2014. The "Do You" video is as fun and surreal as Spoon's Brit Daniel's face is nonchalant as he calmly drives through a city in chaos. When the camera reveals the culprit behind the mass destruction, it's easy to understand Daniel's haggard perspective.

10. Parquet Courts – "Sunbathing Animal"

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Directed by: Andrew Savage and Andy Capper

What better way to juxtapose a lightning-fast punk song than with a cat slowly getting strung out on catnip? Co-director/Parquet Courts frontman Andrew Savage makes a hilariously memorable cameo near end of the video.

11. Nicki Minaj ft. Beyonce – "Feeling Myself"

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Even though Nicki and Bey got a ton of VMA noms for "Anaconda" and "7/11" respectively, the duo's monumental collaboration for "Feeling Myself" went totally ignored. This is a obvious travesty, as the images of Nicki and Bey frolicking around Coachella (and that jaw-dropping Derrick Rose jersey/bikini hybrid) were immediately seared into the public conscious mere minutes after this video debuted.

Unfortunately these days you can only ~legally~ watch the music video with a TIDAL subscription, which is a drag. However, if you really want to re-live those four glorious "Feeling Myself" provides, there are other options. (If you Google hard enough.)

12. Shamir – "Call It Off"

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Directed by: Philip Hodges

"Call If Off" occupies that previously undiscovered space directly between a Target commercial and a production of Avenue Q. Add a dash of LSD and a hint of horror movie, shake well, and you'll get something that looks like this video.

13. Courtney Barnett – "Pedestrian at Best"

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Directed by: Charlie Ford

What's worse: Watching Courtney Barnett embody the pathetic archetype of a sad clown? Or, realizing that Barnett's sad clown wasn't always this sad. In any case, don't watch this video if you hate clowns.

14. FKA Twigs – "Video Girl"

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Directed by: Kahlil Joseph

While FKA Twigs' astounding music video for "Two Weeks" did get a few technical VMAs noms, her dark video for "Video Girl" was ignored. Maybe watching her straddle a death row inmate in the process of getting a lethal injection was a bit much?

15. Vic Mensa ft. Kanye West – "U Mad"

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Directed by: Grant Singer

It seems that the happy-go-lucky Vic Mensa of the days of "Orange Soda" and "Hollywood, L.A." might be a thing of the past. But teaming up with Yeezy for an angry, mosh-inducing banger isn't a bad thing.

16. Carly Rae Jepsen – "I Really Like You"

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Directed by: Peter Glanz

I really really really really really really hope that this is actually an accurate portrayal of Tom Hanks' average day. I also really really really really really really hope this video shoot was as much fun as it looked.

17. Sleater-Kinney – "A New Wave"

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Directed by: The animators from Bob's Burgers

You may not have realized Tina Belcher was such a Sleater-Kinney fan. But somehow, you knew it all along. Be still, my heart.

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